Chris Young Raises The Bar With New Album, ‘Young Love & Saturday Nights’

“This is a very special record,” Young shares.


Madeleine O’Connell

| Posted on

March 22, 2024

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Chris Young; Photo by John Shearer

Chris Young has spent the past few years building out Young Love & Saturday Nights, his biggest album to date. With this just-released project being his first new album since 2021’s Famous Friends, he made sure to take everything up a notch: the party anthems are rowdier, the romance ballads are deeper, and the sentimental tracks are more personal than ever. 

The Murfreesboro, TN native poured his heart and his soul into creating a project that represents both his love for country music and a new chapter of his career. This vision comes to life on his ninth studio album. For this project, Young serves as a writer on 15 of 18 songs, takes on the role of sole producer on three of the songs and acts as co-producer on the remaining tracks with longtime creative partners, Chris DeStefano and Corey Crowder. 

“I wanted this album to be special,” Young shared in a recent interview. “I had a lot of time to work on this record, and even though patience is not my strong suit…I sort of decided, hey, let’s change things up a little bit. There’re songs on here that I didn’t write. There’re songs on here that I co-wrote. There’re songs that I produced by myself. There’re songs I produced with my friends, and I really was just trying to find a lot of things that I wanted to say.”

“I think I just was trying to pour out a little more of myself on this record that I haven’t really delved into before,” he added.

Chris Young - Young Love And Saturday Nights
Chris Young – Young Love And Saturday Nights

Connecting With Songs That He Didn’t Write

The three songs Young did not have a hand in writing on this project are “Double Down,” “Gettin’ Older” and the title track, “Young Love & Saturday Nights.” Despite being outside cuts, these tracks were chosen because Young connected with their unique stories and the powerful potential they carried even before he added his own vocals. Upon first listen, he admitted he instantly wished that he had written each of these songs, which to him was enough proof that he needed to have them on this project.   

“The biggest thing for me is that I look at that song, I listen to it and I’m like, dang, I wish I wrote that. That’s the end all be all for me. I think that in my head, I’m immediately like, got to have it, got to cut it,” he explained before sharing a bit more about what he felt with each song.  “Obviously ‘Double Down’ is just a fun party song that I wish I’d written. When you look at ‘Gettin Older,’ I wanted to write a song for dad, and I attempted it a couple times and just couldn’t get it right. It was good, but it wasn’t great. And then Dave Fenley actually played me that song and I was just like, give it to me. Then ‘Young Love & Saturday Nights,’ I mean, what else is there to say? That’s just a hit. I wish I’d been involved in writing that one, but even though I wasn’t, still love it.”

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Along with the upbeat, late-night party tracks, Young also tackles a slew of more serious topics the powerful relationship between a dog and his owner in “All Dogs Go to Heaven,” a love he knows all too well from having his own furry companion, Porter, and the exploration of different phases of love and heartbreak in songs like “Million Miles” and “What She Sees in Me.” A Chris Young record wouldn’t be complete without a few sexy tunes to round things out. So with that, he lends his smoldering vocals to the tracks “Call It a Day” and “Don’t Stop.” 

This Album Showcases A New Side Of Young’s Artistry

Young admits he used this album as a way to showcase new sides to his songwriting that fans may not have seen before. One strong example of this is the cheerful, track “Country Boy’s Prayer,” which displays the utmost gratitude to the man above for the simple things in life, like ice cold beer, good friends, and a good woman to spend the days with.  

“I feel like there’s a lot of things on this album that are different, topically, than I would normally cover. I don’t say that as a bad thing. I say that as the love songs are there, the breakup songs are there, there’s a song about my dad, there’s a song about my dog. There’s a song about ‘Country Boy’s Prayer,’ which is not even a party song. It’s just a little bit different and I think that that’s important. I think that especially for this record, that song was needed. So I’m glad that I ended up writing that and that it ended up making the final project,” Young shared. 

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Fans got to experience the diverse themes and various depths of songwriting that span the album through advanced releases of “Double Down,” “What She Sees In Me,” “Right Now,” “All Dogs Go To Heaven,” “Looking For You,” and the title track which also serves as Young’s current single.

Penned by Jesse Frasure, Ashley Gorley and Josh Thompson, with a posthumous songwriting credit to David Bowie, “Young Love & Saturday Nights” quickly became a fan-favorite and is currently rising on the streaming and country radio charts.

Young Is No Stranger To Producing His Work

This isn’t the first time Young has had a hand in co-producing his work. In fact, he’s been taking on that role for the past eight years. Having the opportunity to work with both Corey Crowder and Chris DeStefano on the track that represents the overall album was a “full-circle moment” for Young.

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“I was also lucky enough to co-produce some stuff with Corey Crowder and co-produce some stuff with Chris DeStefano. Then obviously ‘Young Love & Saturday Nights,’ the three of us did together, which to me is sort of like a full-circle moment because me and Corey have worked together, me and DeStefano have worked together on number ones and the fact that all three of us got to work on that song, and that it’s the title track of the record and the new single is just perfect.”

On Releasing An 18-Track Record

Young went on to share that even though this is his biggest album to date, and that it’s basically a double record, he still has enough songs in his back pocket to make as many as three more albums. 

“It’s the biggest album I’ve ever made. I just got to see the actual LPs the other day. It is two records, so I guess it’s a double album. I don’t know if it is or not, but it is pretty wild seeing that and knowing that I’ve got enough stuff to make three more albums right now in my phone,” he admitted. “I hope everybody enjoys the fact that I put out that much music. I know it’s a lot. It’s a lot for people to listen through, but I hope that’s a positive.”

Chris Young; Photo by John Shearer
Chris Young; Photo by John Shearer

The “Looking for You” singer continued, “I love this album. I know everybody says that all the time, but I love this record. This is a very special record.”

Young will launch his Young Love & Saturday Nights Tour on April 25 in Tulsa, OK and continue through May. Joining him on the road is special guest, Bryan Martin. 

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Madeleine O’Connell graduated from North Central College with a bachelors degree in Journalism and Broadcast Communications before deciding to pursue her studies further at DePaul University. There, she earned her masters degree in Digital Communication & Media Arts. O’Connell served as a freelance writer for over two years while also interning with the Academy of Country Music, SiriusXM and Circle Media and assisting with Amazon Music’s Country Heat Weekly podcast. In addition to Country Now, she has been published in American Songwriter, Music Mayhem, and Holler.Country. Madeleine O’Connell is a member of the Country Music Association and the Academy of Country Music.